Date: June 11, 2017
Title: Forge True Friendship
The Point: Strong friendships thrive because of shared commitment.
Get Into the Study
Today’s session looks at true friendships, such as the one between Jonathan and David. Before a friendship can be deep and intimate, it must begin. As your group gathers asks them to discuss how they have made friends throughout their life. Maybe in elementary school they sought out a friend who could teach them to hang upside down on the jungle gym, in high school they could have made friends through a team or similar lunch period, or in college it could have been those people with the same major.
As adults making friends can be a bit more difficult. A recent study showed that adults with common interests, like running, might become friends however, more than likely they are not in the same geographical location. With social media and wifi we can connect globally which can make it more difficult to connect in person. As the study showed, the level of friendship isn’t as significant when the friendship is virtual.
As your group discusses, guide them through the conversation of making friends as adults and the goal of deep connection found in relationships like the one we’re looking at today in 1 Samuel.
Reynolds, Gretchen. “Running May be Socially Contagious.” Accessed May 17, 2017. NY Times, April 19, 2017. “Using this data, the researchers noted immediate correlations. Friends tended to display similar training routines day to day and year to year, even if they were separated geographically. But it remained unclear whether the runners were influencing one another’s distance and pace or just hanging out virtually with people who already ran like them.”
Dr. Beth Masters works with college students at Mississippi College where she is the Director of Christian Life and Ministries. She has a PhD in Christian Education from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. Beth loves young adults, baking, and coffee.
Get Into the Study (Activity)
Show the one-minute video clip “Kids Talk About: Friends” before question #1 to prompt the group’s discussion—or play it as follow-up to the question. [This idea supports the group plan in the KJV Adult Leader Guide.]
Study the Bible
Use the following to supplement your discussion of Jonathan’s sacrificial friendship, as recorded in 1 Samuel 20:10-13.
Pippa Middleton’s wedding menu was recently leaked when an Ebay seller listed the menu for sale at £499 ($646 US). No, that price didn’t include any actual food, but was considered “Royal Memorabilia.” Although the private menu was later removed from the site, people have continued to talk about the three-course lamb “feast.”
This is just the latest in an obsession with Pippa Middleton’s wedding. But why the obsession? Pippa Middleton is most well-known for being the sister of Kate Middleton, who married Prince William in 2011. Just being related to someone who is married to someone who is part of the royal family seems to keep her right in the middle of the spotlight.
This obsession with royalty, with power, is nothing new. Jonathan’s claim to royalty was much stronger than Pippa’s. Jonathan was the son of the king. He was next in line for the throne! Nonetheless, Jonathan knew that real power was with the Lord. Jonathan willingly sacrificed his own claim to the throne for his friend David, whom the Lord had anointed.
Ask: What are some sacrifices you can make for your friends?
Nikki Wilbanks is a stay-at- home mom, writer, Bible study leader, and commercial real estate appraiser/investor. She graduated from Pepperdine University, and lives with her husband and two children in Murfreesboro, TN.
- Who is your oldest friend?
- Who was your best friend growing up?
- How manny of your childhood friends do you keep up with today?
- What would you consider the top ingredients in a true friendship?
- What is your favorite thing to do with your friends?
1 Samuel 18:1-4
- What are the benefits of having your soul knit to someone else in friendship?
- What are practical ways to demonstrate selflessness in our friendships?
- What obstacles can hinder us from forming deeper friendships?
- What is your initial reaction to the relationship between David and Jonathan?
- What impact have your closest friends had on your life?
- What role does humility play in friendship?
- What can we learn about true friendship from David and Jonathan?
1 Samuel 19:4-7
- What are practical ways we can serve as advocates for our friends?
- What can se say and do to advocate for our friends?
- What risks do we take when we stand up for our friends?
- How does thinking of Jesus as our advocate impact the way you view Him?
- What dangers did Jonathan face by standing up to his father on David’s behalf?
- When has a friend stood up for you? How did that feel?
- When have you stood up for a friend? How did that turn out?
1 Samuel 20:10-13
- What is your reaction to Jonathan choosing loyalty to David over his father?
- How do you typically respond when a friendship becomes complicated?
- How can we support our friends during difficult seasons?
- What are practical ways we can demonstrate loyalty in our friendships?
- How did David and Jonathan fulfill their commitments?
- What is the role of loyalty in a life-long friendship?
- Has a friend ever risked something for you?
- When have you taken a risk to support a friend?
Share the following with your group members as either a devotional before the group study or as a follow-up devotional:
Here’s a brief five-minute teaching video about this session: Session 2